Before you start your general practice placements, you need to complete certain mandatory hospital rotations and a paediatric requirement. This ensures you have the appropiate clinical skills required to start GP training.
1. You can apply for GP training before you have completed your hospital training
Both colleges require you to complete mandatory hospital rotations to meet your training and fellowship requirements.
However, you can apply for GP training as early as your intern year (also called postgraduate year one or PGY1) to begin training the following year.
This means you can start training as soon as you achieve general registration. The advantage of applying early is that you can secure your training place, and then work on meeting the prerequisite training needed to start your GP placements. However, there is a downside to applying early. It means you can only do one more year of hospital training (unless you do specialised training before you start your GP terms). Some doctors like to gain a diversity of hospital experience before they move into general practice.
2. You need to complete mandatory rotations and the paediatric requirement before you start your GP placements
While you can apply for GP training prior to completing your hospital rotations, you need to have completed your mandatory hospital rotations before commencing GP placements with GPTQ or any other RTO.
This means you’ll need to have completed a minimum of 12 months post-intern hospital training in an accredited Australian hospital. You’ll also need to have completed both the mandatory rotations and the paediatric requirement to meet the fellowship requirements of RACGP and/or ACRRM.
3. Both colleges share some mandatory rotations
The rotations you need to do will depends on the college where you’re completing your Fellowship. Both, the RACGP and ACRRM, require you to complete certain rotations to attain fellowship — and these are the same requirements for any intern to gain general medical registration. These are: General Medicine, General Surgery, and Emergency Medicine. You also need to complete a paediatric rotation or meet the paediatric requirement via other options, as explained in the next point.
4. You need to meet the paediatric requirement for both colleges: there are different ways to do this
As a GP, you will see a lot of kids and young people. Both RACGP and ACRRM Fellowships require you to meet the paediatric experience requirement prior to GP term placement. This can be a full term in paediatrics or paediatric ED, or a combination of options that are dependent upon whether you are training for an RACGP or ACRRM fellowship. These options are outlined on our prerequisite training page. You can also find out more by reading the RACGP paediatric policy framework or the ACRRM fellowship handbook.
5. There are additional mandatory rotations that RACGP and ACRRM require
For an RACGP Fellowship, you’ll need to complete another three rotations relevant to general practice. Your options include but are not limited to: Accident and Emergency (for a second round in this discipline), Anaesthetics, Dermatology, ENT, General Medicine (for a second round in this discipline), Geriatrics, Infectious diseases, Obstetrics and gynaecology, Opthalmology, Orthopaedics, Psychiatry, Rehabilitation, and Urology.
For an ACRRM Fellowship, you’ll need to complete additional rotations in obstetrics and gynaecology, and anaesthetics.
Other relevant rotations include: Aged Care, Emergency Medicine, Intensive Care, Rehabilitation, Palliative Care, and Psychiatry.
6. Your hospital training is a unique opportunity to learn
Your hospital training is a rare time in your career where you can learn clinical skills first-hand from specialists. Use this time as an opportunity to equip yourself with the experience you think will help you down the track.
For the last four years, Dr Matthew French, GP and Medical Educator, has been located at Beaudesert, practising primarily in the Beaudesert Hospital, including community-based medicine, hospital-based emergency and anaesthetics, and ward rounds.
“Throughout medical school I loved every term. That continued throughout my junior doctor training,” says Matthew. “I learnt early in my junior doctor training that I need not limit myself to a specialty and I could still pursue excellence in general practice.”